Revised Shelton apartment plan features fewer units, more amenities

Shelton resident Ben Perry at the site of his latest development, The Crossroads, a 55 and older active adult community off Long Hill Cross Road. Perry has also submitted plans for an apartment development off Old Bridgeport Avenue.

Shelton resident Ben Perry at the site of his latest development, The Crossroads, a 55 and older active adult community off Long Hill Cross Road. Perry has also submitted plans for an apartment development off Old Bridgeport Avenue.

Brian Gioiele /Hearst Connecticut Media /

SHELTON — A local developer further scaled back plans — at the Planning and Zoning Commission’s request — for an apartment building off Old Bridgeport Avenue. 

Ben Perry of S&G Shelton, LLC, presented plans for a 37-unit apartment complex on property listed as 301 Old Bridgeport Ave., also known as 1 Sunwood Drive. Perry had presented a proposal with 43 units, then dropped that to 39 before the commission, at its last hearing on this plan, urged a further drop. 

The reduction in units allowed for reduced building height and the preservation of more undisturbed land between the proposed development and neighboring Sunwood Condominiums. 

After receiving the updated plans, the commission closed the public hearing. Commission Chair Virginia Harger said this application will be further discussed at a future meeting. 

The commission has established a temporary moratorium on any new multi-family residential rental housing units throughout the city, except in the Central Business District, which encompasses downtown. The moratorium took effect June 10, but this plan was submitted prior to it taking effect. 

The building, if approved, would have 11 studios, 25 one-bedrooms and one two-bedroom apartment in what would be a 10,400-square-foot, three-and-half story structure. The new plans also allow for a reduction in necessary parking, from 81 to 76, some of which would be underground.  

The new plans also feature more amenities, including a fitness room on the building’s ground level and more available outdoor recreational space, with seating, fire pit and grilling area.   

Architect Pat Rose said the developers settled on the new plan, with 37 units, because the size mirrored the apartment building that will be built across the street on property on which the old Hunan Pan restaurant was located.  

Rose said moving the building allowed for more green space at the front entrance and between the new development and Sunwood Condominiums. 

Perry has also already agreed to set aside 10 percent of the units as affordable under state statute 8-30g, plus make any necessary improvements to Sunwood Drive as required by the city engineer, all of which bring a financial burden.  

Perry is seeking approval for a Planned Development District on the site, which has frontage on Old Bridgeport Avenue and Sunwood Drive. The property has a residence and two parking lots, which formerly provided extra parking for the restaurant across the street when it was open.  

This would be the second such apartment proposal for this site. The first, submitted by GNK, LLC, in 2018, was met with opposition from some in the neighboring Sunwood Condominiums. Those plans were ultimately withdrawn.  

This area of Old Bridgeport Avenue has become a zoning focus of late, as developer Jim Blakeman has plans before P&Z for an apartment building on the land with the vacant building that once housed Hunan Pan Restaurant., across the street from the 1 Sunwood Drive property. 

For Perry, this would be his latest development. The other, which is ongoing, is The Crossroads, a 55-and-older active adult community, which he said would be the first such development built in the city since the 1970s. 

brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com